This extract from Revelations of Divine Love is chapter 32 from the thirteenth revelation. Here Julian discusses the problem of evil and carefully skirts around the teachings of the church. She explains the importance of faith and offers a reminder that we can’t know how God achieves his plan. What seems impossible to us, isn’t… Continue reading Julian of Norwich: The problem of evil
This extract from Revelations of Divine Love is chapter 11 from the third revelation. Here Julian discusses how God acts within the creation and that nothing happens by accident because it’s all his doing. God does everything so it’s all good. She sidesteps the question of sin at this point, but comes back to it… Continue reading Julian of Norwich: How can anything be amiss?
This extract from Revelations of Divine Love is chapter 5 from the first revelation. Here Julian discusses the nature of the creation and marvels at how small it is when seen within the eternity of God’s existence. She goes on to express the impossibility of finding peace within something so small and limited. “At the… Continue reading Julian of Norwich: Creation as tiny as a hazelnut
Julian of Norwich was a mystic and anchoress of the 14th century and wrote Revelations of Divine Love, the first book to be written in English by a woman. Not much is known about her life, but she was born in about 1342 and may have been from a wealthy family that lived in Norwich.… Continue reading Julian of Norwich: Revelations of Divine Love
A perfect example of the Cancer archetype on film is mother! – a mind-bending Gnostic creation myth stuffed with Biblical metaphors and Kabbalistic symbolism. It’s a home invasion story told from the perspective of Mother Earth and was inspired by the children’s book The Giving Tree. The film was marketed as a horror movie but… Continue reading mother! – God, Creativity, and Pesky Humans
A perfect example of Taurus on film can be found in Chocolat, a light-hearted fable that makes your mouth water just watching it. Like all good films, it’s about many things: religious belief v atheism, feminism, inclusion, temptation, and what it means to live a good life. It’s a tale of freedom and longing, forgiveness… Continue reading Chocolat: Healing the Past and Making Life Sweeter
Part of my occasional series on mystical and gnostic themes in Film & TV. The film adaptation of the Ubisoft game Assassin’s Creed had some intriguing possibilities in its mythology so I checked it out. There’s a lot of hoo-ha around the problem of video games making bad movies and many people were optimistic about this… Continue reading Assassin’s Creed: a film confused by its Gnostic roots
Extracts from the last chapters of the classic mystical text The Cloud of Unknowing. Here our anonymous author explains who the book is for and offers some final words of encouragement to those called to the contemplative life: from Chapter 74: The author takes his leave “Now if you think that this kind of prayer… Continue reading Cloud of Unknowing: Final Words
Extracts from some of the later chapters of the classic mystical text The Cloud of Unknowing. Here our anonymous author explains how to forget the self and some of the dangers of the contemplative path and how to deal with them: from Chapter 43: A naked awareness of self “Make sure that there is nothing… Continue reading Cloud of Unknowing: Death of the Ego
Extracts from chapters 26 and 32 of the classic mystical text The Cloud of Unknowing. Here our anonymous author explains the work of contemplation and gives some tips on how to focus (and these tips work really well, in my limited experience): from Chapter 26: God will pierce the cloud of unknowing “Set to work,… Continue reading Cloud of Unknowing: Techniques to get rid of distractions
Extracts from chapters 6, 7 and 9 of the classic mystical text The Cloud of Unknowing. Here our anonymous author explores the nature of God and how to go about your contemplations: Chapter 6: What is God? “But now you are going to ask me: ‘How am I supposed to think about God himself? What… Continue reading Cloud of Unknowing: What is God?
Extract from chapter 4 of the classic mystical text The Cloud of Unknowing. Here our anonymous author explains why we can’t understand ultimate reality or the nature of God using our minds: Chapter 4: We cannot know God with the intellect “I must tell you a little more about this matter, as I see it,… Continue reading Cloud of Unknowing: We cannot know God with the intellect